Current archtop build

Talk about musical instrument construction, setup and repair.

Moderators: kiwigeo, Jeremy D

Post Reply
User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Mon Oct 22, 2018 2:01 pm

Hi there all, I started this archtop a couple of months ago and thought some progress pics in here might be appropriate.
17 inch by 3 inch body 25 scale, maple back and sides , Sitka top that I’m still carving atm.

Cheers

Rod
Attachments
EAFCCC7F-043D-4317-A648-5A262C74F3F8.jpeg
Bookmatched back set and rough carve
9A9E7055-2EB8-4660-A4E7-FDA06E361D74.jpeg
0FF96308-E683-430B-BBFC-B2780E0E1E7A.jpeg
Maple and Purple Heart neck w cf
AA6DA4FB-CDE0-4D74-A903-DE0AB6A093B4.jpeg
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

simso
Blackwood
Posts: 1663
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Perth WA

Re: Current archtop build

Post by simso » Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:08 pm

Hand carving, I feel for you, that is just too much hard work.

Steve
Steve
Master of nothing,

Do your own repairs - http://www.mirwa.com.au/How_to_Series.html

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:19 pm

Hi Steve, yeah it’s a lot of work but as I only build archtops and ten years along I’m sort of used to it now, I only build one maybe two a year so I can’t see any need to try the copy carver or cnc method, with individual carved I can tweak them along the way if I need to!!

Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

simso
Blackwood
Posts: 1663
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Perth WA

Re: Current archtop build

Post by simso » Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:23 pm

Yep, I would not cnc it personally, but definitely I use the copycarver for said jobs, but I am lazy as well :D

Steve
Steve
Master of nothing,

Do your own repairs - http://www.mirwa.com.au/How_to_Series.html

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:27 pm

If I had a carver out in the machine shop I’d use it but I don’t and I don’t really have room for one.

Rod
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

simso
Blackwood
Posts: 1663
Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Perth WA

Re: Current archtop build

Post by simso » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:21 pm

Even with space, they are still quite large, I built mine onto a frame that folds up and away into a gyprock wall when not in use, when I need it, I have an overhead powered winch which winds it down and out

Steve
Steve
Master of nothing,

Do your own repairs - http://www.mirwa.com.au/How_to_Series.html

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Tue Oct 23, 2018 6:44 am

Here’s a few more pics of the finished back, it’s thicknesses down to 4.5mm

Cheers

Rod
Attachments
86A38547-5ADB-41C1-B19C-9C05389C1382.jpeg
0E773051-B870-432E-A8F7-40AEB3B8640C.jpeg
AC01B1E5-D3D1-45BF-8F9F-B50EFB359F29.jpeg
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

User avatar
lamanoditrento
Blackwood
Posts: 283
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 9:50 am

Re: Current archtop build

Post by lamanoditrento » Thu Oct 25, 2018 1:47 pm

Looks like a lot of work, but also looks like a wonderfully fun time. An archtop is slowly moving up my list.
Trent

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:26 am

Fast forward five months and this build is complete.
17 inch 25 scale archtop jazz guitar in maple and Sitka with Otways Blackwood veneers and one piece bridge, ebony fb, parallel bracing, S6 pickup, natural finish in Mirrotone 3230
Thanks for looking

Cheers
Rod.
Attachments
AF5B9580-18E9-49D3-A23C-DBAE933CB238.jpeg
06F8E000-761C-48F3-A96D-9220CEEC9F76.jpeg
A201F005-93D4-4300-BB13-B2A732287DBF.jpeg
CA06CE5E-7096-4636-A094-32C70B6A1A64.jpeg
CA5C056C-DE80-4983-855A-4AB17C70EB27.jpeg
B0C59062-63D0-49A0-83ED-E849351FDDB5.jpeg
22AF75E4-2DD6-4816-B71C-B043D51340B0.jpeg
25EA609C-65B8-49E7-BD05-9837DC6A1B20.jpeg
E1EEFD52-585C-4478-8830-DAB02B8AA020.jpeg
895FEEC4-C295-4817-8605-15E91409C3AD.jpeg
BF323153-D201-4BDE-A296-596BB73052FB.jpeg
832EFD0C-6B9A-49CE-88DD-EFCAA9A28A05.jpeg
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

GregL
Blackwood
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:01 am
Location: Lismore, NSW

Re: Current archtop build

Post by GregL » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:38 am

Hi Rod,

Looks gorgeous, as usual! Well done... again!
What is the neck timber? Laminations of bloodwood(?) (same as heel cap) and (?). And how did you do the blending of the bloodwood(?) lamination and the veneer at the back of the headstock?

Thanks,
GregL.

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Wed Feb 27, 2019 10:07 am

Don't know why all these uploaded sideways? don't spose one of the admins could sort that out ?

Cheers
Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Wed Feb 27, 2019 10:14 am

GregL wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:38 am
Hi Rod,

Looks gorgeous, as usual! Well done... again!
What is the neck timber? Laminations of bloodwood(?) (same as heel cap) and (?). And how did you do the blending of the bloodwood(?) lamination and the veneer at the back of the headstock?

Thanks,
GregL.
Hi Greg nah that's Purple heart as is under the finger rest and bridge, and i made up the the back headstock veneer with the purple heart lamination in it and the applied it to the neck, just had to line it up perfectly, something i very rarely achieve (doing something perfectly)
Thanks Greg.

Cheers
Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

User avatar
WJ Guitars
Blackwood
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:28 pm
Location: Sutherland NSW

Re: Current archtop build

Post by WJ Guitars » Wed Feb 27, 2019 10:43 am

Excellent result! Great to see you continuing on using hands on tools craftsmanship methods that finally becomes a guitar master piece.

Wayne
https://wjguitars.wixsite.com/mysite-1

User avatar
56nortondomy
Blackwood
Posts: 503
Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:56 pm
Location: Melbourne western suburbs

Re: Current archtop build

Post by 56nortondomy » Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:06 pm

Looks great Rod. Is the lamination under the bridge for looks or did you need to make it a little taller?
Wayne

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:45 pm

56nortondomy wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:06 pm
Looks great Rod. Is the lamination under the bridge for looks or did you need to make it a little taller?
Wayne
Thanks Wayne, no the Purple Heart is there for the aesthetics, there’s actually still a bit of meat on the bridge so I’ll give it one final tweak just prior to delivery. I’ve used Purple Heart extensively in the build so it blends in well.
Cheers

Rod
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

User avatar
56nortondomy
Blackwood
Posts: 503
Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:56 pm
Location: Melbourne western suburbs

Re: Current archtop build

Post by 56nortondomy » Wed Feb 27, 2019 7:12 pm

Yeah I agree looks great. Well done again. Wayne

User avatar
lamanoditrento
Blackwood
Posts: 283
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 9:50 am

Re: Current archtop build

Post by lamanoditrento » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:13 am

Stunning!
Trent

RodC
Gidgee
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2019 4:00 pm

Re: Current archtop build

Post by RodC » Thu Feb 28, 2019 2:06 pm

Hi Rod,
That's a nice guitar.

It gives me a whole lot of inspiration and motivation for my own Archtop build.
With the exception of the fret board, your guitar is very similar to what I want to achieve (mine will be a multi-scale with a few 'out there' design details that will mostly be visible on the fret board).

Time will tell if I succeed, but you certainly have. I love it.

[An entirely different] Rod.

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Thu Feb 28, 2019 2:45 pm

Thanks Rod, happy building with your project, be sure to post some pics on here when you have something to show!!

Cheers

Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

blackalex1952
Blackwood
Posts: 626
Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 6:36 pm
Location: North East Victoria

Re: Current archtop build

Post by blackalex1952 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 3:16 pm

Beautiful work as usual Rod. However, my understanding having admittedly never got to the position and tooling of building an archtop myself but hope to begin soon, is that the bridge needs to be lightweight, and the soundboard and bracing needs to be such that a lightweight soundboard gives volume and projection...a snappy jazz sound. What is your opinion based on your build experience of bridge weight in the case of archtop guitars. I really like the tonality of the Benedetto pups, I use one on my John Liddy archtop, but sadly John passed away and I had not upgraded to one of his later builds which to both my ear and his were better and more lively as he evolved. He also learnt a lot from his efforts building F style Gibson mandolins.
Kind regards, Ross
"Everything I say on the topic is based solely upon inexperience and assumption!"

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:55 pm

blackalex1952 wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 3:16 pm
Beautiful work as usual Rod. However, my understanding having admittedly never got to the position and tooling of building an archtop myself but hope to begin soon, is that the bridge needs to be lightweight, and the soundboard and bracing needs to be such that a lightweight soundboard gives volume and projection...a snappy jazz sound. What is your opinion based on your build experience of bridge weight in the case of archtop guitars. I really like the tonality of the Benedetto pups, I use one on my John Liddy archtop, but sadly John passed away and I had not upgraded to one of his later builds which to both my ear and his were better and more lively as he evolved. He also learnt a lot from his efforts building F style Gibson mandolins.
Kind regards, Ross
Hi Ross, correct me if I’m wrong but I think you’re saying that this bridge looks as if it’s too heavy for this guitar! I think I could have made it a bit lighter but it isn’t too heavy at all, in fact it is lighter than your common two piece Tunomatic bridge.
As a rule I do try to build light especially this type of instrument and to that end I’ve incorporated cf in my bracing to add strength while reducing bulk.
In a non electric world all this is paramount but so much preference these days for amplification has seen the top mounted pup become so popular in jazz builds (Benedetto B6) a few more grams of weight in the bridge becomes insignificant when you’ve got pickups and pots hanging off the belly!
But back to this build,beside the aesthetics of this particular bridge I wanted to see if a one piece was possibly a better method of transmission of energy than the three piece including the thumb wheels and considering the amount of volume this instrument is pushing out,the combination I’ve put together here is on the right track.

I hope you are able to have the archtop experience sooner rather than later!!!
Cheers

Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

blackalex1952
Blackwood
Posts: 626
Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 6:36 pm
Location: North East Victoria

Re: Current archtop build

Post by blackalex1952 » Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:06 pm

Thanks Rod. Love yr work! Yeah it's an electric world and I'm a good hand on a strat, an archtop or an acoustic Selmer, having learnt how to play using the traditional downpicking with a plectrum that evolved from India and was carried by the Gypsies to the West thousands of years ago....Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Kenny Burrell, many more high class US jazz guitarists and most high end players end up adopting that old style for its clarity and power. For Fender Strat, which is an entirely different instrument, stand alone, I use a heavier string than most people because the strings have what I call the back pressure on the pick which I have learnt works for the RH style I use, and present a larger quantity of magnetic material in the string to the pickups...one of the secrets of good amp tone...another tip BTW for the electric guys here, is to avoid lots of pedals and use output valve distortion for a fat quality tone...that's has become my approach in building acoustics as well...tone and texture along with playability, power and a punchy attack...the proof of the pudding in the case of music is determined by the musos' requirements...I usually have to do a set up for the light weight electric "pull off" players who can't and have never considered developing how to pick every note evenly. But a good player is a dream to build for!

Cheers!..Ross
"Everything I say on the topic is based solely upon inexperience and assumption!"

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Fri Mar 01, 2019 4:21 pm

Ok
Rod.
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

User avatar
kiwigeo
Admin
Posts: 9652
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 5:57 pm
Location: Adelaide, Sth Australia

Re: Current archtop build

Post by kiwigeo » Fri Mar 01, 2019 5:06 pm

Rod,

Pics upload the way they're oriented in original file. I'll look at your post over the weekend and see if I can fix things. Will have to save pics, rotate and re-upload.
rocket wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 10:07 am
Don't know why all these uploaded sideways? don't spose one of the admins could sort that out ?

Cheers
Rod.
Martin

User avatar
rocket
Blackwood
Posts: 1108
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:43 pm
Location: melbourne,, outer east
Contact:

Re: Current archtop build

Post by rocket » Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:03 am

Thanks Martin

Rod
Like I said before the crash, " Hit the bloody thing, it won't hit ya back

www.octiganguitars.com

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 28 guests